SWEET MADNESS – Made in Spokane 1978-1981: Volume 2

Album: Made in Spokane 1978-1981: Volume 2

Artist: Sweet Madness

Label: self-released

Release Date: May 19, 2015

www.sweetmadenessband.com

SweetMadness5-19

The Upshot: NW punk. Any questions?

BY TIM HINELY

With a cool looking cover and a nice gatefold sleeve plus lots of pics, I think one, thing: “Crap, I missed Volume 1” (which was released in 2013). Though the band is new to me and I don’t see a lot of info here but I’m guessing they were based in Spokane, Wash., not a place you often hear of many bands being from but this is good.

The band lays down some real jittery post-punk, new wave kinda stuff. Led by Jan Gregor (vocals and Farfisa organ) who wrote most of the songs while vocalist/guitarist John Robison chips in with four of his own tunes (the rhythm section was rounded out by Mark Fenton on drums and Don Lynd on bass) and these guys really should’ve gone places. I guess their song from ’81 “Mechanical Things” (included on volume 1) almost/nearly pushed these guys into not being total obscuros but alas, it didn’t happen. Hell, I’m listening to “Disposeable?” right now and thinking that this jittery, Elvis Costello-iah tune could’ve been one too (a minor hit). The two final songs on side one, “Grab and Hold’ and “Boys Just Get Excited” are both terrific tunes as well. On side B you’ve got stutter nuggets like “Reorientation Camp,” “I Don’t Like You” and “Severn” to keep you going as the coffee wears off.

Kudos to whomever dug this band out from the grave (mighta been Light in the Attic as they are distributing it), I’m out the door right now to find volume 1. See ya’.

DOWNLOAD: “Disposeable?,” “Grab and Hold,” “Boys Just Get Excited,” “Reorientation Camp”

 

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